The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union And Confederate Armies. Series 1, Volume 34, In Four Parts. Part 1, Reports. Page: 566
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LOUISIANA ANI)I ilE T..NS-MssISSIPI.
points. Siml]taleous with . his imi'arcl from Natclitocl(es a fleet of
some thirty gui-boats and trallsl))r1ts. l 1laV of the latter loaded
with troops, ascended thie river al)o)ve G(irall(nd E('o1e(. tlhe port of
Natchitoches, oni the mainly Red River. This fleet was watched by
Brigadier-General Liddell with a small brigade of cavalry and a four-
gun battery. Tlhis officer had been i1n comlnlnalnd on the Ouachita.
He was directe(l to throw his command from the Ouachita to the
east bank of Red River andl annoy the enemy's boats i1 the river.
As lhe was in constant colliul. nlicatio)l with me, his movements were
directed from this side al ([ nmadle to conform with mine. Such
was the confidence of the enemy in his superior numbers and vast
preparations that his fleet ascel(lnde(l the river 100 miles above Grand
Ecore, notwithlstandi(ng the difficulty of navigation, the result of low
and falling water, and the plunishment inflicted by Liddell. The
troops of the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Corps, which came from
Vicksburg and landed at Sinsport. as they came in transports and
had not appeared on thle attle'-Iield of the 8th. were certainly on the
transports, being with out lajnd transportation. From Pleasant Hill
a good road leads to Blair's Land(ing. on Red River, 16 miles distant,
and crossing Bayou Pierre 4 miles from the river, Blair's Landing
being 45 miles above Grand Ecore by water. From Pleasant Hill
to Natchitoches the stage road leads around Spanish Lake, distance
36 miles, through a pine woods desert. The possession of Pleasant
Hill thus prevented Banks from re-enforcin g by the short line from
his transports by the Blair's Landing road an(l threw him back to
Natchitoches be fore lie could unite his troops.
On the night of the 8th, shortly after the action closed, I ordered
a force of cavalry to push on the road from Blair's Landing to Pleas-
ant Hill, taking a cross-road from Mansfield which fell into that road
near the ferry over the Bayou Pierre, men:ltioning in the order that
a small force posted on the bluff overlooking Bayou Pierre could de-
lay indefinitely the crossing of that stream from the east. Unfortu-
nately this order was construed to mean that its execution was to
follow on possession of Pleasant Hill, so that I could not decide what
force we were confronted by on the 9th11. It was late after midday
before the infantry got up. and a glance at Churchill's troops showed
they were too much exhausted to attack. The infantry was ordered
to lie down and rest for two hours. Mean time cavalry was pushed
right and left to gain information, and a party was sent on the
Blair's Landing road b)y a detour to the left. to )'procure the intelli-
gence of which I was deprived by the mistake above mentioned.
This party di(l not return until after the attack. At 3 p. min., the
infantry being somewhat restored by rest, the plan of attack was
formed and the troops put in motion. The Arkansas and Missouri
divisions, under Churchill aln( Parsons, with Etter's and Daniel's
batteries, were sent to the right to outflank the enemy, reach the
Jesup road, and attack from the south and west. Churchill, the
senior officer, was to push Hardeman's, McNeill's, and Terrell's cav-
alry to his right, and conunicate with Walker on his left. When
the enemy was driven, the cavalry above mentioned was to push
down the Jesup road for 12 miles, take a cross-road leading into the
Natchitoches road, and thus fall on the enemy's line of retreat.
Walker filed to the right through the woods to form line between the
Pleasant Hill and Jesup roa(ls an(l comnnuniicate with Churchill's
left. As soon as he heard Clhurchill's andl Parsons' guns he was to
attack by echelon of brigades from i is right, the men to throw for-
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United States. War Department. The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union And Confederate Armies. Series 1, Volume 34, In Four Parts. Part 1, Reports., book, 1892; Washington D.C.. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth146033/m1/595/?q=Etter: accessed October 18, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.